Difference between Advil and Motrin

December 30, 2016 by Editorial Team

Advil and Motrin are common over-the-counter medications. When we look at the packages of Advil and Motrin, we notice that they have the same generic name which is ibuprofen. So is there a difference between the two? Read on as the article answers this question.


Advil vs Motrin

Advil and Motrin are both brand names for ibuprofen, which is the active ingredient of these two over-the-counter medications. Ibuprofen is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) that is used as an analgesic for mild to moderate pain such as headaches, injuries, toothaches, back pain; for primary dysmenorrhea or menstrual cramps; or as a symptomatic relief for rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis. It can also reduce fever. Therefore, Advil and Motrin both treat these things.

Advil products include Advil PM, Children’s Advil, Advil Liqui-Gels, Advil Film-Coated, Advil Easy Open Arthritis Cap, Advil Migraine, and Advil Menstrual Pain.

Motrin products include Motrin IB, Motrin IB Liquid Gels, Motrin PM, Children’s Motrin, and Infants’ Motrin.

Advil vs Motrin

So what is the difference between Advil and Motrin? They are essentially the same drug but are made by different manufacturing companies. Advil is made by Pfizer while Motrin is made by McNeil. There is also a difference in how they are manufactured, the binders and fillers used, and the price (which depends on the specific product).

Advil and Motrin have the same indications, mechanism of action, side effects, and contraindications. Since both are the same, they should not be taken simultaneously. If you take Advil and Motrin at the same time, it will be like taking twice as much ibuprofen as you should. This is not good since the most common side effect of ibuprofen is gastric irritation.


This video shows the mechanism of pain and how ibuprofen works.